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Textile industry to set higher targets for fiscal 2009
Aug '08
During a working session with the industry leaders on August 26, Mr Bui Xuan Khu, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade stated that the Vietnamese textile and garment industry should target an export turnover of US $11.5 billion in 2009.

To achieve this high goal, the industry will need to focus on breakthrough projects. Moreover, the minister believes that a future rise in prices of textile and garment products will serve as an advantage for the industry to meet its target.

The Vietnam Textile and Garment Group (Vinatex) has stressed that expanding exports to Japan would be a major achievement for the country, especially since the two countries will sign a bilateral trade agreement in late September which will come into effect in 2009. This is because, under this agreement, Japan will reduce its import tariff from the existing 10 percent to zero for Vietnamese textiles and garments using materials of Vietnamese or ASEAN origin.

In the meanwhile, the two anti-dumping investigations of US Department of Commerce, conducted in October 2007 and June 2008, on domestic apparel industry acquitted Vietnam from the charges, which is also a positive sign.

However, the industry has been warned by the ministry to keep a close watch on their exports to the US and has recommended a diversification of markets and at the same time withholding the traditional ones. Market observers are of the opinion that the target of $9.5 billion in export value set for this year would be easily attainable as in the first eight months alone; the country fetched $6.04 billion, up by 20 percent over the corresponding period of the previous year.

In fact in the said period, the sector witnessed a rise in export turnover for almost all the major markets, particularly the Republic of Korea, Turkey, Ukraine, Brazil and Argentina. Despite a marginal decline, US still emerged to be the largest importer, contributing 57 percent to the total export value of the country, followed by EU with 18 percent and Japan with 9 percent. Reasons for such remarkable achievement can also be attributed to the massive amount of orders received this year due to quality products and timely delivery.

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